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Panetta Institute For Public Policy

In August 2015, the Panetta Institute for Public Policy will begin the 17th annual Congressional Internship Program for students selected from the 23 campuses of the California State University, Dominican University of California and Santa Clara University. The program runs 13 weeks, beginning with a two-week training session at the Panetta Institute for Public Policy at CSU Monterey Bay, followed by 11 weeks in a Washington, D.C., office of a California member of the U.S. House of Representatives.

The Panetta Institute's Congressional Internship Program has been recognized as one of the best in the country because of the training opportunities provided to participants, as well as the full scholarship covering all program costs.

The Congressional Internship Program is open to undergraduate students who will be enrolled in their junior or senior year during the period of internship. Students who have accumulated more than 120 units are ineligible. Any academic major may apply and the program is open to qualified students regardless of income.

Program applicants undergo a rigorous review and interview process. The campus nominee will meet with the university president and undergo a background investigation prior to nomination to the Panetta Institute. Selection of the campus nominee will be based on academic standing, student leadership experience, commitment to community and public service, communication skills and overall demeanor and personality. Final selection of Congressional Internship Program participants will be made by the Panetta Institute interview team and a representative from the CSU Chancellor’s Office.

Following completion of all program requirements, including submission of an experiential journal and a research paper, interns can earn 20 academic semester units at their school. All program costs are covered by the Panetta Institute. Student benefits include academic fees and tuition, food and housing, a modest living stipend, course materials, along with air and ground transportation.

Interested students must complete the application form and submit all required paperwork to the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, Brotman Hall 377, by noon on Monday, February 23, 2015. Unfortunately, the university is not able to consider applications that are lacking any of the required materials and applications that are received after the deadline.

  • Deadline: Monday, February 23, 2015 at noon
  • Submit to: Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, Brotman Hall 377

Requirements for the Congressional Intern Program specifies that the campus nominee:

  • Is a matriculating student during the internship;
  • Has not accumluated more than 120 credit semester units or 180 credit quarter units;
  • Has not taken part in this program during previous years;
  • Exhibits superior academic achievement;
  • Has a demonstrated commitment to community and public service;
  • Is willing to accept entry level work assigned to unpaid assistants (interns);
  • Be willing to take on assigned tasks and work hard;
  • Possess exemplary maturity and leadership abilities;
  • Demonstrate ability to be a good team member;
  • Possess excellent English written and oral skills and clarity of speech appropriate for constituent phone calls and visits;
  • Be willing to live in assigned group housing with other interns during the entire program;
  • Be willing to submit a written two-page essay stating the reasons for her/his interest in the Panetta Institute’s Congressional Internship Program
  • Be willing to ensure excellent English language proficiency by providing a graded paper for the selection committee’s review (paper must be graded and at least three pages in length);
  • Have never been sanctioned under the California Code of Regulations, Title 5, Article 2 (Student Discipline), Section 41301;
  • Be willing to undergo a background investigation;
  • Be a U.S. citizen;
  • Be a California resident; and
  • At the time of the personal interview, is able to provide proof of health insurance that is compliant with the Affordable Care Act.

In addition, the selected nominee is expected to:

  • Be willing to make a full-time commitment to the Panetta Institute's congressional internship for the duration of the program. (e.g., no enrollment in LSAT, MCAT, GRE or other graduate school preparation classes and/or exams during the internship);
  • Work full-time in a congressional office;
  • Attend required seminars in Washington, D.C. (arranged by the Panetta Institute);
  • Submit a brief weekly report to the Panetta Institute;
  • Maintain a journal; and
  • Write a 20-page research paper.

The required materials must be submitted to the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, Brotman Hall 377, by noon on Monday, February 23, 2015: